Police in South Africa hope to avoid US World Cup matchup because of secuirty

CAPE TOWN, South Africa (AP) - South Africa's police commissioner says he hopes the United States is knocked out of the World Cup in the first round to avoid the massive security challenge of a visit by President Barack Obama.

General Bheki Cele told parliament Friday it was "50-50" whether Obama would visit Africa's first World Cup, but organizers had been told that if the Americans make the knockout stage then Obama might jet in.

Cele said: "Our famous prayer is that the Americans don't make the second round. They get eliminated and they go home."

South Africa's top police official said he had provisional confirmation that 43 heads of state would go to the World Cup, and "those 43 will be equal to this one operation" if Obama makes the trip.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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